The Banaag syllabary is the creation of Frederick Victor
Paredes Añana. The syllabary is designed to write Tagalog
and was to some extent modelled on the Tagalog (Alibata) syllabary
and Japanese Katakana.
The appearance of each symbol was inspired by various objects,
body parts, human gestures and human activities. For example,
the symbol for "a" is the first letter of the Tagalog word
alay which means to offer (the symbol resembles a
person in the act of offering); the symbol for "i" is the first
letter of the Tagalog word ipin which means teeth (the
symbol resembles human teeth); symbol for "u" is the first
letter of the Tagalog word upo which means to sit
down (the symbol resembles a person sitting down).
Other Tagalog words are represented by diacritics
Logograms for relatives
In Tagalog the words opo and hindi po /'di po are only used when
talking to an older person or someone of high authority.
Titles and professions
A dot under a symbol is used to lower the pitch of the
vowel sound. So that "i" becomes "e" and "u" becomes "o".
The inherent "a" sound of a particular consonant is muted
by flipping the entire symbol horizontally.
In the Tagalog grammar, the word "mga" (pronounced as ma-nga)
is used to pluralize a singular noun.
Sample text in Tagalog in the Banaag 1 syllabary
Ang lahat ng tao'y isinilang na malaya at pantay-pantay sa karangalan at
mga karapatan. Sila'y pinagkalooban ng katwiran at budhi at dapat magpalagayan
ang isa't isa sa diwa ng pagkakapatiran.
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They
are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another
in a spirit of brotherhood. (Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)